According to the American Cancer Society, lung cancer is the second most common cancer in Americans today. Close to 14% of new cancer diagnoses are lung cancers. In fact, more people die of lung cancer each year than any other cancer. There are a few ways you can reduce the risk of lung cancer in your home. Lung cancer awareness is critical to your help, so consider these 3 tips from Douglas Cooling & Heating to keep your indoor air quality from affecting your health.
The most significant tip is to make your home a “no-smoking” zone. Second Hand smoke doesn’t just increase your chances to develop lung cancer. It also increases the risk of respiratory infections, asthma, and sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). Smoke from cigarettes clogs your system’s filter. Preventive HVAC maintenance cleans and replaces filters, but if you smoke in your home, change the filter more often. Raise lung cancer awareness in your home by not smoking indoors and spreading secondhand smoke.
According to the EPA, radon is the leading cause of lung cancer in non-smokers. Radon is a radioactive gas that is colorless, tasteless, and doesn’t smell. Radon can be in the ground surrounding your home, in your water, or in the building materials of your home. Radon levels in a home can be very high due to lack of proper ventilation.
The only way to know for sure if your home has radon is with testing. You can test your home for radon yourself, or you can hire a professional to perform the test. Start with a short-term test to determine your radon levels. You want to perform the test at the lowest level of your home for the most accurate results. If the radon level in your home is a 4 or higher, consider testing again with a long-term test. A long-term test will give you the best information about your home’s radon levels.
Increase Indoor Air Quality
Increase your home’s indoor air quality with equipment that works with your HVAC system. You will get healthier air and added efficiency with your heating and cooling system. Here are a few things to boost your indoor air quality:
- Air Cleaners/Purifiers: These devices work to pull your indoor air in and clean the air before circulating it back into your home. High-efficiency purifiers can remove higher amounts of contaminants from your indoor air. They improve allergies, asthma, and respiratory functions when used with a high MERV filter.
- Ultraviolet (UV) Lights: UV lights eliminate and prevent the growth of mold, mildew, bacteria, germs, and viruses in your home’s air. They are installed in your duct system to work with your heating and cooling system.
- Dehumidifiers: Humidity breeds dust mites and mold inside your home. Dehumidifiers help control humidity in your air to prevent these allergens from growing. The humidity levels inside your home shouldn’t be above 50%, otherwise your indoor air quality is reduced drastically.
Aside from investing in air cleaning options for your home, you should have seasonal HVAC maintenance performed on your heating and cooling system. HVAC maintenance keeps your system clear of dust, dirt, debris, and other contaminants. A dirty unit decreases efficiency, increases your monthly electric bill, and leads to expensive breakdowns in the future.
Now is the time to raise lung cancer awareness in your home. Douglas Cooling & Heating’ technicians will provide you with options for increasing your indoor air quality and perform quality HVAC maintenance annually. Contact us today for healthier, cleaner air!